Cross Country Senior Night Stirs Up Appreciation for Teammates
In the last meet of the season, on Thursday, November 7, 2013, the cross country team celebrated both its seniors and a win after defeating Newark in three of the five divisions.
Spectators could only see the start and await the finish at the meet held at Quarry Lakes, but the junior varsity runners competed for two miles and the varsity runners raced for three miles. The JV Girls, Varsity Girls, and Frosh Soph Boys won with scores of 23-32, 15-40, and 21-34 respectively as cross country is scored like golf, where a lower total is better. Before the meet began and darkness fell however, the seniors were honored with gifts from their teammates.
“The underclassmen created personalized shirts with inside jokes as well as really well-made posters that they held up as we were running our race,” senior and Varsity runner Rishabh Wason said. “In addition, the adults created a large collage of pictures of each runner which they gave to each of the seniors.”
All of the excitement not only affected the seniors, but impacted the lower classmen as well, as sophomore and Varsity runner Felicia Lin felt determined to win for the seniors, but also dismayed at their upcoming departure.
“I’m super sad,” Lin said. “They give us a lot of advice and leadership and make it so much fun. It’s a little scary when our coach says, ‘You guys are going to have to lead the team next year’ and thinking that we’re going to almost be seniors.”
As only MVALs follow, the team finished their regular meets satisfied with their accomplishments.
“I feel this season has been one of the best cross country seasons I have taken part in,” Wason said. “ I feel that my performance from previous years has shown a great deal of improvement and I also feel that our team as a whole is a tighter group this year!”
Senior Lucy Huang, who came to watch and cheer on her friends had similar sentiments regarding the team’s togetherness and tenacity.
“The cross country team is definitely one of the most tight knit teams at American,” Huang said. “It’s a grueling sport, and the fact that they stick to it and never fail to cheer and support each other without any petty disagreements always amazes me. They’re definitely a family in every sense of the word.”
Though Wason admits that he has no plans to run cross country after high school, senior and Varsity runner Divya Madhavan feels differently.
“I do [plan to continue running after AHS],” Madhavan said. “It’s become a passion. I want to run in college, but if not for the college, then intramural or running on my own because I love it.”